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Archive for the ‘Trump’ Category

Completely Exonerated?

I just don’t get this part:

If the Mueller report completely exonerates Trump, if it proves there was no collusion, if it shows that we treated the president unfairly, if it allows the “country to move forward again,” then why isn’t Trump making sure that every one of us gets a copy of it as soon as possible?

Hand out the reports, so we can read it for ourselves!

Trump is free and clear, and we can all be sure that the country is safe and protected by our beloved leader.

But it seems like everyone, including the GOP enablers in congress, are fighting to keep it secret.

Why?

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You can judge the character of a person by what the person spends his or her money on.

You can judge the character of a nation the same way.

Our military budget is larger than that of the next 10 nations COMBINED.

The U.S. military is planning on buying a total 2,443 F-35 jets. Since the pricing of each jet is not clear, because they are sold in “batches” where the costs of development are sometimes wrapped into the planes, I find it difficult to figure out how much individual planes actually cost. I have come up with up to $200 million each, but on the low end around $100 million each (source).

Let’s say we’re on the low end at $100 million for each plane.

Trump and DeVos just suggested we cut the entire budget of the Special Olympics – about $17 million a year. We know Trump caved after the public outrage that announcement created. Two billionaires, two kleptocrats, trying to take the Special Olympics out of the government’s budget – in our name!

Let me suggest the following:

I don’t think we need 2,443 F-35 jets. I think 2,442 will do just fine. And we’ll take the $100 million we saved and fund the Special Olympics for about six years straight.

We can live with one less F-35, right?

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If Hillary got it, you’d be doing wind. Windmills. Weeeee. And if it doesn’t blow, you can forget about the television for that night. ‘Darling, I want to watch television.’ ‘I’m sorry! The wind isn’t blowing.’ I know a lot about wind.

— The President of the United States

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The Ghosts of Donald Trump

The ghosts of Donald Trump have haunted us through the decades.

Stephen King is an ardent Trump critic. Here is a representative tweet:

There are many Stephen King tweets about Trump, and most of them are not kind.

I just happen to read King’s Bag of Bones now, which was published in 1998 and plays in that time. In it, one of the primary antagonists is a tech billionaire who abuses people with his money. Here is an excerpt I came across:

“I’m a lucky girl, don’t you think? First I marry the son of an extremely rich man, and after he dies, I fall under the protective wing of another rich guy. Next I’ll probably move in with Donald Trump.”

— King, Stephen. Bag of Bones: A Novel (p. 190). Scribner. Kindle Edition.

That reference made me check the copyright date of the book, and sure enough, it was 1998. Trump was around then, and notorious enough to make it into a Stephen King novel.

There is a new chain of Pieology restaurants. They are pizza places where you can customize your individual pizza. While patrons stand in line, they can peruse a large wall of famous quotes. The picture below is of this wall at the Escondido location. I took it before Trump ran for president.

You can see, among many others, there is a quote attributed to Donald Trump:

As long as you’re going to be thinking anyway, think big.

While this is attributed to Trump, I am pretty sure it was used by many motivational speakers long before Trump, but we now know that Trump likes to “own” things and thoughts that aren’t really his.

Here is the funny thing: When we recently went back to Pieology, this quote by Trump was nowhere to be found. They had placed a sticker with another quote over it, so Trump is not on the board now. I am assuming that this was done in all Pieology stores, not just the one in my home town.

Recently, when searching through old boxes of books, we found this one:

It’s copyright 2007. It’s a hardcover book, brand new, never read, and I cannot remember buying it. I would not pay $26.95, the posted price, for this book, not now, not in 2007. How it got into my book boxes, without me even knowing it was there, is baffling.

Finally, I just noticed this shoe box in our closet:

I am sure The Woman bought these Ivanka Trump shoes many years ago. She would not do so now. But still, the box is in our closet.

I have to say: Trump’s ghosts are permeating our lives in America. He is a relentless self-promoter, in my opinion the most successful real estate salesman in history, regardless of the fact that his company sure looks like an organized crime syndicate that has now muscled itself into the White House.

We are numb to the ghosts of Donald Trump, which haunt us now, and will haunt us for decades to come. My grandchildren will suffer from some of the effects of Trump in the White House today.

I think we need an exorcism.

 

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My Thoughts on Loser Teachers

Keep up that fight. Bring it to your schools. You don’t have to be indoctrinated by these loser teachers that are trying to sell you on socialism from birth.

— Donald Trump Jr. at rally in El Paso, Texas

The oligarchy we are now living in and allowing to continue every day is making more and more decent Americans sick. I know a lot of teachers, and they are some of the most hardworking people I know. They are dedicated, and they are not getting paid nearly enough to account for the value they provide to our children and to us.

But to oligarchs, anyone that does not get rich by money-laundering, tax evasion schemes, stiffing contractors, hiring illegal workers to keep wages low, anyone struggling to get by day to day, paycheck to paycheck, apparently looks like a loser.

And this is what we are supporting and allowing to continue, day after day.

An oligarchy.

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The president is now trying to use a chant to present to the American people a complex problem that no one has been able to properly address let alone solve in decades. Chants like this are useful for second-graders as mnemonic devices, or for indoctrination, but they do not work for me.

The president looks foolish and puerile to me when he spouts such drivel.

I am an immigrant. Not a third-generation immigrant like Trump himself, but a direct immigrant, like two of his wives and his in-laws. I have voiced my views about immigration many times in these pages.

Ponderings on the Trump Wall

Trump and his Scare Tactics about the Migrant Caravan

Immigrants are not Bad – Like Trump would have us Believe

Trump’s Police State – the Beginning

Book Review – Spare Parts – by Joshua Davis

Immigrant Statistics

Immigrants Who Created Jobs – and Tucker Carlson

Is there something wrong with our immigration system? Of course, I agree, and I don’t think I know anyone who does not agree. Trump proclaiming that “Democrats want open borders” is a foolish soundbite that does not reflect reality. Nobody wants open borders. Everyone agrees that to have a nation you need borders.

The United States, compared to many or most other countries, is in a unique position in that it only has two neighbor nations. This position has contributed to the country’s rise over the last century. It’s difficult to invade or attack a nation in such a geographic location.

We have immigration laws that are not being enforced properly, and when being enforced, result in public outcry, like family separation policies. We have immigration laws that prevent legal immigration for jobs where we need the help, like in agriculture, service jobs, etc. Immigration reform is a huge challenge and needs to take place. The problem is that it hasn’t been addressed, and no administration or Congress has found it possible to pull it off.

Trump is trying to reduce it to a soundbite. And while a border wall may well be necessary and helpful in some places, or all places along the southern border, it’s not going to get public support by spouting soundbites, particularly when those soundbites are based on incorrect facts.

Many of us don’t believe that “the wall” Trump wants would actually work and bring down crime. I don’t believe that immigrants are our main source of crime. I actually think Trump is vilifying immigrants as a political pawn game. He knows that sowing fear works, as proven by dictatorships throughout history. Scare the people enough, and they’ll let you do anything!

If Trump really wanted a wall, he should stimulate an active dialog. He should have the problem studied properly and he should educate the public with the facts. If the facts showed that a wall would solve the immigration problem and bring down crime, 90% of us would support it. There is no question in my mind about that.

Trump, if he were to stimulate a productive debate about the immigration problem, and came up with an immigration bill that would solve that problem, he would have the support of every Democrat and Republican in Congress. If he did that in his remaining two years, he would truly by viewed as a successful president.

Show a Will – Craft a Bill!

 

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Witch Hunt? Not!

 

Witch Hunt:  : the searching out and deliberate harassment of those (such as political opponents) with unpopular views

Trump keeps calling the investigation a witch hunt. Yet, many of his senior aides during and after his campaign are now either indicted, or serving prison time, or are scheduled to serve prison time, or have already served prison time.

Most of the felony charges came after confessions, not convictions in trials. Most of the charges are not about the crimes themselves, but about lying about them.

Why are all these people around Trump lying about their contacts with Russia? If Russia is so benign, why are they lying and willing to go to prison – for Trump?

Witch hunt?

Not!

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Trump’s tantrums and his playing reality TV with the nation’s economy so he can get $5 billion to build a border wall (which he said Mexico was going to pay for) had me do just a bit of research.

I have always thought that walls don’t work. People tunnel under walls, and they fly over them. As a matter of fact, the majority of undocumented aliens in the United States arrived here by plane, came in through an airport, got their passport stamped, and then overstayed their visa.

Hordes at the border trying to cross are images made up by the Trump administration to scare us. Making immigrants out to be murderers and rapists are scare tactics. Immigrants in general are more productive and contribute more to society and the economy than native-born Americans.

Trump trying to state that “Democrats want open borders” is simply silly. Nobody wants open borders. Border laws must be enforced. Nobody will disagree with you on that. But spending $5 billion on a wall would take years, would be a waste of money, and would not make a difference in the end. So why do it?

Trump is also telling us that immigrants flooding into the United States is a problem for us, and that this is now worse than ever. That, too, is simply not true.

In fact, our undocumented population has dropped during the Obama years and has continued to drop between 2014 and 2018, beyond the chart above.

The methods that are in place are working and have been working. Trump is not doing any miracles. He is simply playing reality TV games with us and making us froth at the mouth, turning us against each other.

Here is a study on illegal immigration which provides some valuable facts:

US Undocumented Population Drops Below 11 Million in 2014, with Continued Declines in the Mexican Undocumented Population

It took me no more than 20 minutes of casual research to counter most of Trump’s “facts” about the terrible immigration problem we’re having in the south. Does he ever google some of these issues himself? Does he have staff that provides the facts to him if he can’t google? Does anybody advise the man?

The Congress should deny spending a single dollar on a border wall that makes no sense, has no purpose, and does not fix a problem we actually don’t have.

If the president is willing to cripple our economy over this, it’s his own doing and everyone knows it.

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Trump: Tillerson Dumb as a Rock

 

Remember when Trump kept telling us he would only bring in the very best people?

This is what eventually happens to everyone who works for Donald Trump. He discards people. He trashes them in public. He humiliates them. People go to jail for working for him.

Who will want to come to work for this man? Only the best?

 

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Trump really must think we’re all stupid.

If you took a commercial airliner from Dallas, TX to Guatemala, it would take over three hours.

The distance is about the same as that from San Diego to Canada, and the majority of the “hike” is in desert terrain.

The Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) is a world-famous hike that a few thousand people hike every year. It starts at the Mexian border outside of San Diego and goes to the Canadian border in Washington State. Seasoned through-hikers walk 20 to 30 miles a day, every day. They start in April and end in September. The hike is brutal, requires frequent resupply packages, and only the most persistent and hardy hikers finish it. It also costs a hiker a few thousand dollars for resupplies, several pairs of hiking boots that they wear out, and broken gear. You can find out more by reading one of the many books about hiking the PCT. Here is one of them I reviewed: Book Review: Bliss(ters): How I Walked from Mexico to Canada One Summer – by Gail M. Francis.

So now Trump is sending over 5,000 American soldiers to the border to wait for 5 months for the first of these migrant families with children in their arms, in flip-flops, with water bottles in their hands, to reach the American border?

There is so much wrong with this. If the president really believes this caravan is a danger to the safety of the United States, he can definitely wait 5 or 6 months until the caravan gets close and then send troops.

In the interim, the military could use its satellite surveillance to keep track of the caravan.

Of course, not a single one of those migrants in the current caravan will ever make it near the United States border due to the immense hardship of the incredibly long trip. It makes the Mormon hand-cart trips in the 1800s look like a walk in the park in comparison.

Obviously, the president and his supporters are using this to scare us. They are using fear-tactics and xenophobia to whip up the ignorant and uneducated, the people that don’t have the insight to look at a simple map and assess what’s really going on.

Fortunately, most Americans can see through this nonsense.

I can only say: MAGA stands for Make America Stupid Again.

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Trump, and now Nikki Haley, are telling us that “the world” respects the United States and Trump. America is “respected again.”

That’s baloney.

Here is a chart that shows confidence that the U.S. president will do the “right thing” regarding world affairs. The countries shown are Spain, France, Germany and the U.K.

Clearly, Obama was respected, and Trump is lower than Bush. It says nothing about how Americans feel, or what’s good for America. It says something about how other countries “respect” the American president. This must irk Trump, to whom it matters so much what others think. This is probably why he denigrates Obama so much. He is obsessed with Obama and does not understand why he cannot garner the same respect and admiration.

Respect must be earned. It can’t be gained by making outrageous – and false – claims.

Trump lives is a world of his own wishful thinking.

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Did you know that the United States has 883 military bases in 183 counties?

Check this out:

The US military has a staggering 883 military bases in 183 countries. In contrast, Russia has 10 such bases – eight of them in the former USSR. China has one overseas military base. There is no country with a military footprint that replicates that of the United States. The bases in Japan are only a small part of the massive infrastructure that allows the US military to be hours away from armed action against any part of the planet.

There is no proposal to downsize the US military footprint. In fact, there are only plans to increase it. The United States has long sought to build a base in Poland, whose government now courts the White House with the proposal that it be named “Fort Trump.”

Currently, there are US-NATO military bases in Germany, Hungary and Bulgaria, with US-NATO troops deployments in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. The United States has increased its military presence in the Black Sea and in the Baltic Sea.

Attempts to deny Russia access to its only two warm-water ports in Sevastopol, Crimea, and Latakia, Syria, pushed Moscow to defend them with military interventions. A US base in Poland, on the doorstep of Belarus, would rattle the Russians as much as they were rattled by Ukraine’s pledge to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and by the war in Syria.

These US-NATO bases provide instability and insecurity rather than peace. Tensions abound around them. Threats emanate from their presence.

— AsiaTimes

No wonder we spend more on the military than the next 10 countries combined! No wonder Trump complains that other countries are using us “for their protection” without paying us back for that.

I hate to do this, but I actually agree with Trump. Our country is insane with its military. Do we really need 883 military bases all over the world?

Could we maybe make do with 100 or so?

Or 101 – I think Trump will want his “Fort Trump,” won’t he?

Oh, my tax dollars at work!

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If I was a guest at your house for a backyard BBQ party and

  • I mocked your father or grandfather who was a prisoner of war?
  • I mocked your disabled child by making spastic movements?
  • I mocked your neighbor’s family who lost a son in Afghanistan?
  • I mocked your daughter who had been sexually assaulted?

You would throw me out and I would likely no longer be your friend – at best.

And yet, here is our president doing exactly those things on national TV, and the people standing behind him laugh and applaud and act like this is funny.

It would be horrendous if I did it as a private citizen. You would throw me out and beat me up.

But here is the man who holds the office that we teach our schoolchildren they should look up to as a role model, and we accept it.

It destroys the dignity of the presidency, and it may take generations before the image and decorum recovers.

I don’t know exactly what the people standing behind Trump laughing and applauding really think deep inside. But I know that I think that Trump is a despicable human being, one that I will try to forget about quickly once he is voted out of office.

I also don’t know exactly what the Republican leadership, all those men and women that ran against Trump in the campaign, are thinking. I remember Rubio and Cruz saying that it was our duty to make sure that Trump never got anywhere near the Oval Office.

Really – damn their careers – one or more of these cowards need to stand up, man up, and do what they know is right, and do what they are really thinking inside, and end this national disgrace of a reality show of a country.

We need to take our country back.

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When the Soviet Union collapsed almost 30 years ago, the assets of the country, its industrial base that had been neglected so long, was grabbed up by a few young, enterprising, creative and possibly criminal individuals. Some say there were less than twenty of them. They, and their successors, are now called the Russian oligarchs. The majority of the economic power of the Russian nation is consolidated by very few people, all under control of the central government, which is headed by an apparently corrupt and possibly murderous leader: Putin. Russia, in my opinion, is a nation state run by organized crime.

In the United States we were better than that. However, in the recent couple of years I see very similar developments. Radical deregulation is fueling the stock market, which is not a surprise. The Obama regulatory environment had throttled the economy. One can argue one way or the other. I personally believe that while we’re riding high on the economy right now, and while the super rich are getting richer, the middle class is doing “just ok.” A tax saving of a few hundred dollars funds one more trip to Costco, which is not a huge improvement for the middle class. But eventually our children and their children will regard the Trump era as a time when their fathers enriched themselves forcing them to pay the bills. The reckoning for today’s boom time will come.

We’re also massively adding to the national debt now. The debt payments are about to exceed our military expenses. While the conservative world was furious when Obama added to the debt, now it does not even get mention. All of a sudden, the debt is not important. After all, the economy is so great, it’s going to pay for it all. I do not believe this is going to work, but only time will tell.

Meanwhile, the buffoon in the White House is overloading us with so many scandals, we can’t even focus on them anymore. When Obama wore a tan suit, the media went crazy for a few days. When Michelle Obama wore a sleeveless dress, she was castigated. There are nude pictures of our current First Lady on the Internet and nobody seems to take note. We were not numb to scandals, and the media needed something to write about.

Trump does outrageous things every day that my moral compass that does accept. However, there is so much, the list is so long, it’s drowned out. While we’re not able to pay attention, the billionaire class, some of them in the White House and Cabinet, are openly lining their own pockets with corrupt activities, every day. The country is being looted and polluted. The American tax payer is being raped. And we are numb.

An oligarchy is quickly forming, where a very small number of very rich people control the entire economy and the political system.

Is that making America great?

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Here is a tweet by Donald Trump in 2014:

Then, against all odds, our next president would be Donald Trump. When he spoke to the United Nations for the second year, he claimed in the opening paragraphs of his address:

In less than two years my administration has accomplished more than almost any administration in the history of our country.

The room erupted in giggles and laughter. Trump later claimed that they were not laughing at him, but with him:

What Trump does not seem to understand is that the way people respond in a Trump rally is not representative of what the country thinks of him, and certainly not the world.

A Trump rally is filled with ardent supporters. We recently found out that the people standing behind him are actually carefully selected and if anyone ever does not react the way Trump would expect they actually remove and replace him.

The United States encompasses only about 5% of the world’s population. Trump’s base that voted for him was 62 million people. Today, his base is generally measured at about 30% of the U.S. electorate. The average IQ of the U.S. electorate is, by definition, average or about 100. I am not suggesting that the average IQ of Trump supporters is any lower, but I am saying it is not likely any higher than 100, either.

At his rallies, Trump is used to people cheering to his every utterance, no matter how false, stupid, purposely misleading, or incendiary. It’s the people that want to hear that stuff that go to his rallies, so of course, his worldview of what people think about him is distorted.

I have traveled out of the country since Trump took office, and I can say with certainty that I have not yet met a SINGLE foreign person who supports Trump or is impressed with him. Most laugh at him and ask me whether I am embarrassed by the buffoon. The vast majority of 95% of the world’s population think he is an embarrassment to our nation.

And make no mistake about this: it was the opposite with Obama, no matter what Trump thinks or thought. The world loved and respected Obama.

Now enter the hall of the United Nations. The people in the audience are highly trained diplomats or even heads of state, and their aides and assistants. They are the best and brightest who rose to the pinnacle of power and influence in their own countries to eventually be ambassadors at the United Nations. I would carefully guess that the average IQ in a United Nations assembly is well over 150, or genius level, which is far beyond Trump, no matter how big he says his brain is.

Unfortunately for Trump, at the United Nations he is definitely not the smartest person in the room, as he thinks he is when he is surrounded by his followers. Whether some of these people he is talking to are from shithole countries (his words) or not, they will far outclass him, both in intellect, in morality, and definitely in education.

So when they hear ‘In less than two years my administration has accomplished more than almost any administration in the history of our country,’ they will crack up.

I would.

 

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